Ladies’ Golf Club sells acreage for $23 mil

De­vel­oper pur­chased land and plans to de­velop two condo tow­ers

Thornhill Post - - News - by Jo-Anne Craine

Af­ter a sea­son of de­lib­er­a­tion and col­lect­ing bids on two po­ten­tially sell­able parcels of land, the Ladies’ Golf Club of Toronto has sold a 2.6acre par­cel of land to Tridel, which plans to de­velop two condo tow­ers on the north­east cor­ner of the golf course, near Bayview Av­enue.

The other par­cel they con­sid­ered sell­ing cov­ered 11 acres of the golf course, just south of Royal Or­chard Boule­vard. Mul­ti­ple bids for the two parcels of land were con­sid­ered, and even­tu­ally the golf club ex­ec­u­tive board chose to pro­ceed with the sale of the smaller 2.6-acre par­cel. Golf Club mem­bers voted 86 per cent in favour of the sale in Oc­to­ber. The Ladies’ Golf Club of Toronto’s general man­ager, Paul Bussiere, con­firmed Tridel bought the land for $23 mil­lion.

“The sale that we’ve done is se­cur­ing our fu­ture,” said Bussiere. He added, “The fact that we’re keep­ing the club here for the long term, to me, is a more im­por­tant thing than los­ing the lit­tle piece. I’m sure ev­ery­one would hate to see the whole golf club go. ”

Bussiere noted that the funds would be able to sup­port ex­pan­sions and im­prove­ments to club fa­cil­i­ties and their golf academy. This sale was gen­er­ally met with re­lief from the lo­cal com­mu­nity.

A new res­i­dents group, the Royal Or­chard Ratepay­ers’ As­so­ci­a­tion was or­ga­nized shortly af­ter the land went on the mar­ket. Its pres­i­dent Peter Raw­son said, “Our po­si­tion with re­spect to this new land sale de­vel­op­ment is that it is less in­tru­sive on the neigh­bour­hood than the ear­lier threat.” How­ever, he added, “We aim to be present at each stage of the re­zon­ing process in or­der to pro­tect green space, trees, wildlife habi­tats and traf­fic flows as best we can.”

Not ev­ery­one is so con­tent with the sale. Ward 1 coun­cil­lor Valerie Burke said she was “very dis­ap­pointed” that the board voted in favour of sell­ing the land.

“As a coun­cil­lor who has con­sis­tently ad­vo­cated for the pro­tec­tion of green space or nat­u­ral her­itage, it’s just an­other piece of green space that will be de­vel­oped,” she said.

Michael Mann, di­rec­tor of project fea­si­bil­ity at Tridel, in­di­cated plans for a pair of mid-rise condo build­ings were in early stages. How­ever, he promised, “We’re pre­serv­ing as many of the trees as we can around the de­vel­op­ment and adding to it.”

The sale that we’ve done is se­cur­ing our fu­ture.”

Res­i­dent Peter Raw­son near his home, which over­looks the Ladies’ Golf Club

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